Charleston's never short on holiday events, and here are some of our favorites to get you in the holiday spirit.
Kick the season off on Dec. 1 at Southend Brewery with the 5K Reindeer Run. Run, skip, hop, or stroll-- it doesn't matter how you choose to go about it, just be sure to dress in your best holiday get-up to compete in the costume contest and win great prizes. All reindeer are welcome, even the small red-nosed ones, and proceeds will benefit the MUSC's children's hospital.
Around 4:30, head to Marion Square where Mayor Riley and Santa will light the 60-foot Tree of Lights.
Afterward, stick around downtown for the Holiday Parade of Boats. Vessels large and small will be lit up from port to starboard as they cruise down the Cooper to the Ashley. Viewing will begin at around 5:30 from the Mt. Pleasant side and will end at around 7:30.
The next day, get down to the corner of Calhoun and Meeting Streets around 2 p.m. for the Charleston Christmas Parade. If you're in Moncks Corner, join the holiday horde at Berkeley High School at 3:30 for the Moncks Corner Christmas Parade.
The Goose Creek Christmas celebration will be held on Dec. 6 behind the Municipal Center. Stop by to enjoy some hot chocolate while listening to Choral groups and watching the Lakeside Light Display. Even the Grinch couldn't spoil this fun family event.
Also on Dec, 8, the Isle of Palms hosts the Holiday Tree Lighting Festival. Live bands will be playing, local restaurants will be offering food specials all day and Santa Claus will make a special guest appearance.
All month long, you can pack the car (or sleigh) with family and friends and head to James Island County Park for the Holiday Festival of Lights. Enjoy a three mile drive through the park lit up by more than two million lights, with not a single dud among them. Other attractions include gingerbread houses, marshmallow roasts, carousel rides, and enough holiday treats to make Ebenezer Scrooge crack a smile.
And if you prefer boats, check out the only cigarette tour boat in Charleston, which is slowing down to bring you the Charleston Sleigh Ride. You'll be toured around Charleston Harbor to see the Christmas lights by sea. And what sleigh ride is complete without complimentary hot chocolate and waterproof blankets? Just make sure to wrap up warmly — Charleston winters aren't quite as mild out on the water.